Honey Bee Agression
Biology 342 Fall 2012
Honey Bee aggression
As honey gatherers have known for ages, honey bee colonies respond aggressively when attacked or otherwise disturbed. Interestingly, there is a wide range of intensity in this response, varying between different colonies and type of bee.
The aggressive response tends to fluctuate within the bee population, rather than within an individual bee. In relatively docile colonies, a small percentage will respond aggressively, whereas in a more aggressive colony a larger force will be elicited.
When examining agressive and defensive bee behavior, it is useful to ask what are known as Tinbergen's four questions. These, generally speaking, ask the why and the how of this behavior, both within an evolutionary context, and also within the current time of the behavior. Therefore, our four questions are this:
Please explore the site to find out the answers to our questions!